Many years ago Janice stepped off the edge of a predictable life to one in which she can palpably feel the more primitive rhythms of life and to connect with the deeper longings of her soul. While BS degrees in Food Science and Nutrition and a Masters degree in International Development were vehicles for entering different countries and cultures, Janice’s natural curiosity to deeply know people coupled with her interest in problems solving and commitment to service has guided her life and work. From a three-year stint in the Peace Corps to multiple years working with Mercy Corps and other NGOs, she resided overseas for nearly 18 years, living and working in rural villages, towns, and occasionally in larger cities. Janice honed her program development, administrative, and project management abilities, steeped in rich cultural traditions alongside the ancient indigenous Quechua culture of Bolivia and unique Tajik, Kyrgyz, and Uzbek cultures of Tajikistan, among many others. The weave of nature in their daily lives, the tight family and community connections, and the extremely open hearts and homes found in these cultures taught Janice values that touched the deepest part of herself. All of the villagers that Janice lived and worked with demonstrated resilience in the face of tremendous odds, and she feels she owes so much to them for their generosity in the face of scarcity, and their hospitality and humility; Janice feels indebted to so many unforgettable and generous people around the world.
Upon returning to the United States, Janice steeped herself in another community and culture; one that cares deeply about the way they walk in the world; one curious to reconnect with nature and with that which feeds and sustains them; a community daring enough to live on the edge, and to humbly demonstrate that the container for culture resides within each of our hearts. Living at Quail Springs, Janice is reminded that, of the many contributions Quail Springs makes in the world, one of the most important is the awareness that we are all connected; to the natural world and to each other, and that nurturing those connections enables the positive changes we seek to materialize.